New Approaches to World History Pedagogy: Teaching Non-textual Literacy with Non-traditional Media

AHA Session 247
Sunday, January 6, 2019: 9:00 AM-10:30 AM
Williford A (Hilton Chicago, Third Floor)
Michael Mulvey, St. Thomas University

Session Abstract

Increasingly, first year students arrive at undergraduate institutions with the world already at their fingertips. Raised with constant internet access, many students watch a football match in England and steam the latest music videos on YouTube all while doing their homework. That very ease of access, however, frequently leads to an overload of input that the students are not trained to critically explore. They know an enormous amount of information and have only a vague sense of what it means. Part of that gap is that most of the information is non-textual, usually visual, and students have little to no training in how to to analytically engage with these kinds of sources and their myriad nuances. This panel discusses methods for teaching diverse visual and material (non-traditionally textual) sources to undergraduate students in introductory history courses. Each paper addresses a different medium--including photographic prints, graphic novels, video games, and film--and considers both how to use that material in the classroom and what lessons can be drawn from it. The panelists additionally describe the efficacy of a variety of assignments aimed at encouraging students to engage critically with a wide variety of source material. Using visual and material sources in the classroom helps prepare students to better engage with the world around them and to engage critically with the wide variety of source materials that they will encounter in their lives beyond the history classroom.
See more of: AHA Sessions